Image credits: Klára Vernarcová
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News Article

Fulfillment Tools for Logistics Players

By Jorge Ramos Zwanziger | Fri, 02/26/2021 - 08:07

Logistic companies are capitalizing on the boom in e-commerce caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Multinational logistics company Mail Boxes Etc. (Mail Boxes) named Mexico its sixth most important country in the world and the first in Latin America, while Mexican company Pikkop has expanded its services locally through two models of micro-fulfillment.

E-commerce in Mexico reached MX$316 million in 2020, having experienced an 81 percent growth compared to the previous year, according to a report by the Mexican Association of Online Sales (AMVO). This growth led Mail Boxes to make a series of investments in technology, infrastructure and human capital, to expand on its attention capacity and provide a specific modality of fulfillment. The latter service involves collection, storage, packaging and the final delivery of products. “We work with over 54,000 customers, 60 percent of which use the platform for e-commerce,” said Ilan Epelbaum, CEO of Mail Boxes in Mexico. The company handled over 1.5 million shipments in Mexico throughout 2020, reports T21.

Mail Boxes also developed a digital platform to manage the effects of the pandemic in its operations in several ways: first, by taking care of the health of clients and collaborators; second, by increasing shipment volumes alongside the growth of e-commerce and third, by addressing the drastic change in consumption habits that favored online sales channels. “It was a tough 1Q20 but in April things started to change in a way that nobody could foresee. In May, we doubled shipment volume, something that nobody expected, but this meant that we were also not ready,” said Epelbaum. “A very important year is coming; January was one of the best months the company has ever had. We are forecasting another year of double-digit growth.”

Local companies are also jumping on the e-commerce trend through innovative business models. Pikkop has developed two models of micro-fulfillment that bring products closer to the final consumer. Micro-fulfillment services are characterized by being smaller and closer to cities, usually providing automatic storage systems. The company focuses on providing its services to SMEs that migrated their operations to online channels and are looking to grow their consumer base. Through its platforms, Pikkop allows its clients to offer collection, storage, picking, packing and delivery options. “This has become a necessity if people want to compete with a Mercado Libre or an Amazon. The niche market we are developing focuses on improving and supporting MSMEs, which lack experience but need a fulfillment service,” said Ashish Punj, CEO of Pikkop, in an interview with T21. Over the course of 2020, Pikkop services increased by 500 percent and this year the company is hoping to increase investments to reach a new level.

Jorge Ramos Zwanziger Jorge Ramos Zwanziger Junior Journalist and Industry Analyst